News & Politics

Where & When: What to Do This Weekend

Cherry-blossom fun and food, a French dance night, a space party, March Madness bars, an Easter bar hop, and lots more in this weekend’s nightlife.

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Thursday, April 2: The Civilian Art Projects gallery is hosting a Spring Fling fundraiser at Local 16. A $10 cover will get you food and drink specials, and proceeds go to Civilian’s fund for artists.

The Laughing Man, one of our new favorite local groups, plays a free show at Tryst in Adams Morgan from 7 to 9 as part of local artist Liz Gorman’s photography show.

The Phillips Collection continues its fun After 5 happy-hour series tonight. The theme? Household design. There’ll be a cash bar and live music plus a discussion about home design with Apartment Zero owner Douglas Burton. 5 PM; $12.
Friday, April 3: Francophiles, heads up: You’ll want to head to Discotheque Underground tonight to do some French-style partying. As part of Francophonie 2009, a celebration of culture and more from the French, DJs Jay Style and Eva Pearl will be spinning tunes at the Smithsonian’s Ripley Center. The $30 ticket will also get you appetizers and an open bar. 9 PM.

Saturday, April 4: There are tons of cherry-blossom activities going on this weekend. (Have you checked out our blossom guide for the scoop on all things cherry tree?) There are a couple of events we’re particularly fond of: the National Cherry Blossom Festival parade takes place along Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th streets, Northwest, at 10 AM. And Alex Trebek is the grand marshal. (What does a Canadian game-show host have to do with cherry blossoms? We haven’t the foggiest.) Then there’s the Sakura Matsuri Street Festival taking place from 11 to 6 on Pennsylvania Avenue. It features traditional Japanese music and dance, food, anime, martial-arts exhibits, and lots more. Free!

Eight bars, including Recessions, the Front Page, and Rumors, will be part of a day-long Easter bar hop, which starts at 3. Drink specials include $2 Coors Light and $3 Blue Moon bottles; food specials will also be available throughout the day. Registration at Mackey’s Pub is $13, or $10 if you bring two cans of food, which will be donated to a food bank. Want more Easter info? Make sure to check out our Easter Guide.
Looking for the perfect bar to watch the March Madness final? Look no further: We have both a roundup of March Madness deals, and a guide to great sports bars.

The National Gallery of Art screens highlights from the Montreal International Festival of Films on Art at 2. The films will include Ellsworth Kelly: Fragments, a study of Kelly’s life in Paris; Achieving the Unachievable, about M.C. Escher and number theorist Hendrik Lenstra; Andy Warhol: Denied, a look at the Warhol Art Authentication Board; and Looking for an Icon, about photographs that attain canonical status.

Nothing will put you in the mood for spring like a tune by the band Mates of State. The adorable husband-and-wife duo puts out infectious, harmony-filled pop that’s lovely and warm, and you can catch them tonight at the 9:30 Club.

They’re not kidding when they say this party will be out of this world. (Har har, excuse us.) In celebration of the anniversary of Russian cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin’s flight into space (the first ever), the Goddard Space Flight Center is throwing a huge World Space Party. There’ll be live music, a DJ, presentations by NASA scientists, and our personal favorite note from the Web site: “Star Wars enthusiasts representing the Empire and the Rebel Alliance will patrol Yuri’s Night. Accurate replicas of Star Wars droids (including R2-D2!) built by the Washington, DC Metro Area R2-D2 Builders Club will trundle around the party.” Sign us up! Admission is $10; $20 at the door. Get tickets here.

Sunday, April 5: Sunday revelers, take note: Today is the Cherry Blossom ten-mile race, and some roads will be affected. Check out the course here to find out more.

Make a lazy Sunday under the blossoms with an outdoor picnic. Check out our list of markets, sandwich shops, bakeries, and gourmet-food stores where you can find lunches that travel well.